Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Full length and space

I've been shooting a lot of full length lately. Well, no more so than usual but I've been addressing the full length shots differently.

First, I've been composing them differently. I will sometimes compose the frame so that the model is to one side. It's not much but it's different. Sure beats the middle of the road stuff I used to do (and still often do).

Secondly, I've been cropping them differently. I think I used to crop them so there wasn't much negative space. Lately, I've been trying to maximize negative space, particularly to the sides...

Which brings me to my next point. With the negative space on the sides, sometimes I'm actually widening the original image. dSLRs shoot 2:3 but that aspect ratio sucks for width. So in Photoshop I'll widen the canvass (and occasionally lengthen it too). How you ask? With CS5's content-aware fill, it's usually not too much trouble. In fact, I'm often filling in parts of the background anyway, where the background gets chopped or the model was too tall (and too far away from the back) or if a C-stand's leg is in the frame etc. I'm telling you, content-aware fill has been worth the $200 it cost me to upgrade from CS4... it might even be worth all the bugs that there've been in CS5.

Speaking of aspect ratio, when I can get away with it, I've been converting to 5x7. For whatever reason it feels more comfortable for me. I suppose I'll be much more comfortable when the 6x4.5 comes back (the Hasselblad) for shooting full length. I dunno, maybe I'm just a wider aspect ratio kinda guy?

Here are a few examples since this post is worthless without pics... guess which ones are 5x7:


  1. Hello Charles,

    My guess would be the first image, and I heartily agree. That content-aware business in CS5 is awesome. Have you played around or used the puppet warp tool yet?

  2. LOL! I guess it was a trick question, moments after I wrote it, I realized that they were all 5x7s :)

    I haven't played with the puppet warp tool. I'm not very good with the warp tool at all! :)